Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts
Wheaton College
College History



Edith White changes admission policy

In 1926, admissions secretary Edith White changed the admissions policy to make the inclusion of a photograph with the application optional, and not mandatory. Though her exact motivations for making the change are not known, White did explain that the change was not made as a way to promote colorblindness in admissions. White wrote to College President Edgar J. Park, about her decision, saying that the photographs "might indicate the race of the applicant in cases where the student failed to be entirely frank. I can imagine, however, that there might be doubtful cases where I should be hesitant to make a decision as to traces of colored blood or Hebraic ancestry on the basis of a photograph." While this change was not made because the administration was becoming more progressive, the change certainly did make it easier for non-white applicants to be judged primarily on their academic merits.

Staff: E. White: White to Park, 12/21/26.

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